QWEL Certification is available to Landscape Designers and Landscape Architects too. A Landscape Architect has at least a Bachelor’s Degree in Landscape Architecture and enough experience to pass a very rigorous professional licensure exam. Landscape Architects most frequently design large-scale commercial projects or high-end residential projects. Only Landscape Architects can legally create commercial landscape plans. Utah has a practice law that makes it illegal for any individual to call themselves a “Landscape Architect” unless they have passed the LARE (Landscape Architects Registration Exam). All others must use the term “Landscape Designer”.
A Landscape Designer may or may not have professional design training at the University Level. Landscape Designers generally focus more on residential design and the horticultural needs of home landscapes. Some landscape designers are also accredited through APLD (Association of Professional Landscape Designers). Landscape Designers generally create designs and often provide consulting services for homeowners for an hourly fee. Landscape designers often have more extensive horticulture training and experience than Landscape Architects.
Whether you hire a Landscape Architect or a Landscape Designer for your project, it is always recommended that you review their credentials and obtain references from previous clients. You may also contact the Utah State Commerce Department, Division of Occupational Licensing for questions regarding licensure.